Friday, September 4, 2009

Challenge outtakes

Just in case you’re thinking it’s all sunshine and flowers and effortless production and consumption of deliciousness 24/7 here at Casa Roving Lemon, I thought I’d share a couple of less-than-stellar moments during this past month’s Cookbook Challenge:

1. Zeppoli I was gunning to make it to five recipes this month for once, and the fifth one I had bookmarked was zeppoli—an Italian sweet treat made with fried dough. I read through the recipe, and thought, “Oh, that’s just bread dough. I’ll just use the bread dough I have in the refrigerator.” Completely ignoring that a) the recipe had a much higher ratio of yeast to flour than standard bread dough; and b) I’m always trying to achieve more of a country-bread, slow-rise, chewy tang with my bread dough. This second fact, in particular, gives you pretty much the opposite of what you’re looking for in zeppoli, as I discovered when I bit into one. They tasted pretty much like tiny, fried sourdough rolls. With powdered sugar on them. Not my finest effort. (Not that that stopped me from eating them all.)

2. Broccoli Note to self: if you are fortunate enough to have a child that happily eats her own body weight in broccoli when you produce it in the normal way (or, rather, the way that’s normal for you), don’t change things. Don’t suddenly roast the broccoli and present it to her like that. She will say things like, “Mummy! It has brown stuff on it!” and “Mummy! I don’t like this brown stuff!”. She will try to claw off the brown stuff. With her fingers. She will make faces and gag theatrically and try to scrape her tongue clean. No matter how much you like the broccoli (and I’m sure you will), believe me, this will interfere with your enjoyment of dinner.

3. Dining post hoc(kily) I’ve eaten cold cereal for dinner at least four times in the past month, usually after hockey. By the time I’ve finished training, schlepped all my kit home on the bus, and taken a shower (since the rink does not offer such sissy amenities as hot water), I’ve got no energy left to turn on the stove, even to heat up leftovers.

But, as you can see from the photo at the top (crappy as it is), we still make the effort. Those may be Deep-Fried Sugar-Frosted Mini Dinner Rolls, but, who cares, we’re still gonna decorate ‘em. With cachous! (That’s Australian for what we in the US call “those little silver balls you stick on cakes”.)


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